“Peaky Blinders” fans will be able to join the gang – virtually – in a new VR game that will allow players to interact with characters from the hit series. Start-up immersive studio Maze Theory teamed with the show’s producers and is making the game, which will launch in 2020.
Artificial intelligence technology means characters will respond to players’ gestures, movement, voice, sound and body language in the game, and that each player will have a different experience and be totally immersed in the “Peaky Blinders” world.
Players will be tasked with infiltrating a street gang and undertaking a covert mission. They will come face-to-face with new and existing characters, and be able to explore iconic locations from the show.
Successful players “will earn their cap” and be part of the Peaky Blinders themselves. “They will literally be part of Peaky Blinders’ world and be able to interact with characters in ways no-one can predict,” said Russell Harding, executive producer at Maze Theory. “Fans of the cult show have been calling out for this type of experience and we’re honored to be giving it to them.”
Steven Knight created the series. “I’m really excited by the prospect of ‘Peaky Blinders’ entering new territory,” he said. “People who love the show will love the opportunity to immerse themselves in the world in such a total way.”
The series is produced by Caryn Mandabach Productions and Endemol Shine’s Tiger Aspect for the BBC. Netflix has it internationally. Endemol Shine handles the ancillary and distribution rights. A narrative action console and PC “Peaky Blinders” game from Curve Digital has already been announced.
Maze Theory was formed by former Activision and Sony PlayStation veterans and London based creative agency Output Group. It has been awarded U.K. government funding for the game and development of its cutting-edge AI performance technology.
The British government’s business secretary, Greg Clarke, also announced £4 million ($5.2 million) funding has been awarded to a group including “Wallace & Gromit” filmmakers Aardman to develop new immersive storytelling experiences based on their IP. Tiny Rebel Games, digital specialists Potato, creative agency Sugar Creative and the University of South Wales are also involved.
“Success stories like award-winning ‘Wallace & Gromit’ and BAFTA-winning ‘Peaky Blinders’ are part of the reason why our creative industries are truly world-leading – attracting audiences both here in the U.K. and internationally and helping create a sector already worth some £100 billion to our economy,” Clarke said. “This backing will also give our home-grown talent the opportunity to lead the way in creating and using virtual and augmented reality technologies, remain at the cutting edge and create thousands of highly-skilled jobs.”